Hope!

The ride out of Anchorage incorporated a good stretch of cyclepath.

The ride out of Anchorage incorporated a surprising amount of cycle path.

And when it didn't, we did battle...

And when it didn't, we did battle...

Quick update after our first few days on the road. We’ve arrived in the tiny tiny sleepy sleepy town of Hope. I’ve managed to track down a yoga class for this evening; seems a good way of stretching out tired limbs, and help ease into the long days ahead. Tomorrow should be mainly singletrack as we follow Resurrection Trail.

The Kenai Peninsula, home to some of the finest singletrack in Alaska.

The Kenai Peninsula, home to some of the finest singletrack in Alaska.

Why can't they make electric cars as stylish as this?

Why can't they make electric cars as stylish as this?

Dan, sporting the latest in millinery fashion from Australia.

Dan, sporting the latest in millinery fashion from Australia.

The Kenai Peninsula is stunning, think epic Scotland times a ten – vast glaciers looming high, replete with deep crevasses and cascading waterfalls. The scale is big, and that includes the RVs, goliaths of the road, who tear past. Not much in terms of services, though we pitstopped along the way to buy some local elk jerky.

Lots to report, including a day of kayaking out of bizarre, time warped Whittier, once a clandestine military port chosen for its cloud-wrapped, inhospitable setting. There, the rusting carcasses of boats and trucks are strewn all over the place, but the clam chowder is particularly tasty. Most of its 182 inhabitants live in the looming, 18 story Begich Towers, now a civilian building.

Begich towers blends in subtly with the surroundings. The 'city under one roof' was built in 1953. The outside seems to have been reclad, but apparently the bathrooms have their original pink tiles.

Most of Whittier's 183 inhabitants live in a Begich Towers, a remnant of its military origins. Built in 1953, it's set surreally below a massive glacier. The outside seems to have been reclad, but inside, the bathrooms still have their original pink tiles.

There are 18, identical floors.

There are 18, identical floors. A perfect location for a Luc Besson film.

Inside, it was impossible to tell if it was night or day.

Wandering its neon corridors, it was impossible to tell if it was night or day.

The 'city under one roof' has its own police station, DVD rental shop, hairdresser and church. It's a weird place alright.

The 'city under one roof' has its own police room, DVD rental room, hairdresser and church. It's a weird place alright.

Outside, it was a rusty wasteland.

Outside, it was a rusty wasteland.

A tunnel links the settlement to its port. Imagine scurrying through this in the depths of winter...

A tunnel links the settlement to the port. Imagine scurrying through this in the depths of winter...

It's a kayak haven. Here's our home for the night - the kayak centre, housed in a cavernous ex military gym. The next day, we kayaked round the entrace to Price William Sound, where we encountered a nosey seal.

Whittier is a kayak haven. Here's our home for the night - the kayak centre, housed in a cavernous ex military gym. The next day, we paddled round the entrace to Prince William Sound, where we encountered a nosey seal, and a rookery with a thousand birds.

Blog post to follow on our return to Anchorage – this is written on the clever iTouch, that shall henceforth be known as the iMonkey. It’s charging as I type thanks to the Sunlinq solar panel, which makes it even cleverer. It’s a peaceful spot here; watching the salmon fishermen cast out their lines in the river, a backdrop of steep, rugged mountain peaks rising proud on the other side of the coastal inlet.

Salmon fishing at the laid back hamlet of Hope.

Salmon fishing at the laidback hamlet of Hope.

Camping tonight. We’ve now hoisted up our food bags into the trees so hungry furry creatures can’t munch our food. A lot of bears in this area as the salmon are running upriver at the moment, so we’ve been told to take care. The camping spot feels secret and idyllic; beside the river in a clearing, down an overgrown trail that wends into the woods…

Hanging our food for the night. If the bears can get that, they deserve it...

Hanging our food for the night. If the bears can get that, they deserve it...

Shelley at Shala Yoga recommended this riverside spot. A perfect pitch for our first night of wild camping.

Shelley at Shala Yoga recommended this riverside spot. A perfect pitch for our first night of wild camping.

4 thoughts on “Hope!

  1. Colin Trees

    Great blog, loving reading about yours & Daniel’s adventure and very much looking forward to the next update, and photos.

    Reply

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